Clark Howard

Scam Alert: How To Protect Yourself From Voice Cloning

Criminals are steadily coming up with new and creative ways to steal your identity and your money. With the rapid advancements of artificial intelligence (AI), voice cloning is a new worry that consumers need to be aware of.

Not your regular phone scam, voice cloning has exploded in popularity over the past couple of years as AI's capabilities continue to grow.

What Is Voice Cloning and How Can I Get Scammed?

Voice cloning is the practice of digitally copying a person’s voice. Voice cloning used to be achieved by voice recognition software, but with AI technology, it can be done in seconds and can be virtually indistinguishable from the real person’s voice who was digitally copied. While there are many benign applications for voice cloning, such as when a person has lost their voice, the reality is that bad actors are keen to adopt the technology.

"Families and small businesses can be targeted with fraudulent extortion scams; and creative professionals, such as voice artists, could potentially have their voices appropriated in ways that could jeopardize an artist's reputation and ability to earn income," according to the Federal Trade Commission.

Because many consumers and business owners have voicemails that could be recorded and duplicated in a voice-cloning scam, money expert Clark Howard is telling people to safeguard themselves.

Voice Cloning Scams: How To Protect Yourself

And that's exactly what a business owner and listener to the Clark Howard Podcast wanted to know how to do.

Because many business owners have personalized messages on their voicemails which could be co-opted by crooks, Clark says using a third-party service could alleviate some risk.

“Just taking the simple precautions of not using your own voice for your business voicemail is a good idea,” Clark says.

"You can use a digitized version like YouMail, which is very popular with businesses."

With YouMail, if it knows who’s calling, it will even greet the person by mail and say, for example, ‘Hello, Craig! Clark is not available.’”

“It’s all digitized and not your own voice so not of any use to a crook,” Clark says of YouMail’s voicemail service.

While YouMail has several paid plans, there’s also a free version, which both Clark and I use.

Want to learn more? Read our in-depth review of YouMail.

The post Scam Alert: How To Protect Yourself From Voice Cloning appeared first on Clark Howard.

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